What is Keystone virus? Zika’s Cousin has now infected the first human!!

Zika Virus Has a New Competitor

PMR-KeystoneZika-v1 (1)

Another mosquito-borne virus, the Keystone virus, might pose a risk to people, specifically those in Florida.

A confirmed human case of Keystone was recently reported in the medical journal Clinical Infectious Diseases. Research author J. Glenn Morris suggested Keystone cases could be “fairly common in North Florida,” but he said this is the first confirmed case, possibly because patients are rarely tested for the virus.

Here’s what you should know about the Keystone virus:

When was it found?

The virus was first discovered in the Tampa Bay-area in 1964. Since then, animal cases (squirrels, raccoons and deer) have been found from Texas to the Chesapeake Bay.

How do you catch it?

The virus is transmitted by mosquito bites, usually bites from aedes atlanticus.

What are the symptoms?

Symptoms might include a rash, mild fever and encephalitis, brain inflammation.

How many people have it?

University of Florida researchers recently said a 16-year-old boy was the first human case of the Keystone virus. The teen did not suffer from brain swelling, but did have a fever and rash. The case was identified because doctors thought the teen might be suffering from the Zika virus during a known outbreak. The laboratory tests they collected from him for Zika testing led them to the Keystone discovery. The Florida Department of Health told USA TODAY there was another recorded case of the virus in a young child from Sarasota in 1964.

Is it related to Zika?

The aedes atlanticus mosquito, a cousin to the Zika-spreading aedes aegypti mosquito, is most well-known for carrying the Keystone virus. Aedes infirmatus mosquitos as well as other aedes and culex species have also known to carry the virus, the Florida Department of Health said.

Is there a cure?

There’s no specific treatment plan for the virus in humans.

How can we prevent it?

The only known way to prevent the virus is to avoid mosquito bites. The Environmental Protection Agency recommends using insect repellent, wearing long-sleeve shirts and pants, staying inside air-conditioned areas and using screens on windows and doors to prevent bites. In addition to these tips, the Florida Department of Health also suggests draining standing water, such as rainwater collected in garbage cans or pool covers.

Back in April, before the height of mosquito season, Bill Gates devoted a whole week of his blog, appropriately named ‘Mosquito week’, warning and educating people on the dangers of mosquitos.  This a great read to educate yourself and to learn about how a tiny African kingdom named Swaziland has developed a well-coordinated malaria program—including a robust surveillance and control system—that has helped reduce the number of cases in the country by more than 90 percent since 2002. Now, Swaziland aims to eliminate malaria entirely within its borders by 2020. (please see the gates notes link below to learn more)

What will the case be for the U.S.A. in 2020 and what will it look like since new cases are being discovered each year, bringing the number of mosquito species to over 3,000 in the world, of which 176 of them can be found in the United States.



Kyle Berard of Plasma MedResearch located in Boca Raton, FL

USA TODAY NETWORK Ashley May, USA TODAY Published June 25, 2018












10 Signs Your Thyroid Isn’t Working

The thyroid, a butterfly-shaped gland located at front of our neck below the Adam’s apple, is a small but very important gland that releases hormones that have a huge impact on metabolism, among other processes. According to the American Thyroid Association, about 20 million Americans suffer from some form of thyroid malfunction, yet 60 percent don’t realize that they even have a problem. This makes realizing that the thyroid is malfunctioning really important.

Bright Side brings to you 10 signs that indicate that your thyroid might be acting up and it’s time to pay the doctor a visit. Don’t miss our important bonus at the end.


Dry, scaly and thick skin


Hypothyroidism leads to the calcification of the skin, causing it to appear thick, very dry, and scaly in texture.

Hair loss/thinning hair

Hair growth depends on the proper functioning of the thyroid gland. Changes in the level of the hormone produced by the thyroid gland can lead to changes in hair growth. Excessive production of the hormone can cause the hair to become thin all over the scalp while underproduction of the hormone can lead to hair loss

 Unusual bowel activity


Thyroid hormones play a role in regulating the bowel movement. An underactive thyroid can cause constipation, while an overactive thyroid can result in frequent bowel movements.

Depression/sudden anxiety

If you have been feeling anxious or unsettled lately, there’s a chance that your thyroid gland has been acting up. Overproduction of thyroid hormones results in more brain stimulation causing patients to feel jittery or anxious. Underproduction of the hormone has the opposite effect, it makes the patient feel depressed and tired.

Feeling unusually cold/unusual sweating


The thyroid gland is like a thermostat for our body in the sense that it regulates body temperature. If the hormone production gets beefed up it unusually increases the body’s metabolism causing people to feel overly warm and sweaty. If there is a deficiency of the thyroid hormone in the body the patient might be prone to having low body temperatures and cold intolerance.



Thyroid hormones are responsible for regulating the body’s metabolism. Lower than normal production of the hormone can significantly decrease metabolism and calorie burning abilities of the body causing you to gain weight, while over secretion of it will make you lose weight abruptly.

Irregular periods


If you are experiencing period problems, improper thyroid functioning might be the culprit. A lack of enough hormones will make the periods heavier, longer, or cause them to occur closer together while an abundant production of the hormone might make your periods lighter or cause them to occur further apart.

Brain fogging/difficulty concentrating

If your thyroid isn’t working properly, neither is your brain. An underactive thyroid can cause subtle memory loss while an overactive thyroid can make it difficult to concentrate.

Neck discomfort or enlargement


Both overproduction and underproduction of the thyroid hormone can lead to the enlargement of the thyroid gland causing the neck to appear swollen.

Changes in heart rate

Under secretion of the thyroid hormone can cause the heart to beat slowly, whereas hyperthyroidism causes a fast heartbeat.

Bonus: Who is at a greater risk?


  • Women more than men
  • Women over 60 years of age
  • People with a family history of thyroid related problems

Neck check for thyroid disorder:

Tip your head back and swallow. Examine your neck around the Adam’s apple and the area above your collarbones. If you feel lumps or bulges, see a doctor.


Sources: https://brightside.me/inspiration-health/10-signs-your-thyroid-isnt-working-515510/



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Can your next tattoo detect early forms of cancer?

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Scientists at Harvard University in Cambridge, MA have been developing a series of smart tattoos that can indicate levels of dehydration and sugar levels through minimally invasive implantation. Dermal Abyss located in Cambridge tattoo inks change color according to the chemistry of the body’s interstitial fluid, which can be used as a surrogate for constituents of the blood. One ink changes from green to brown as glucose concentration increases. The team has also developed a green ink, viewable under blue light, that grows more intense as sodium concentration rises, an indication of dehydration. Researchers tattooed the inks onto segments of pig skin and noted how they changed color or intensity in response to different biomarkers.

Recently, however, Swiss scientists have developed an experimental skin implant that triggers the appearance of a dark mole when there is a change to the body’s interstitial fluid. Detecting the subtle body changes, such as hypercalcemia, work to serve as an early warning of cancer.

The implant, or “biomedical tattoo,” as researchers call it, has been tested on lab animals, lasts for about a year and recognizes the four most common types of cancer: prostate, lung, colon and breast cancer. It works by reacting to the level of calcium in the blood, which rises when a tumor is developing. About 40 per cent of cancers could theoretically be detected this way, researchers say.

“The biomedical tattoo detects all hypercalcemic cancers at a very early, asymptomatic stage,” says lead author Martin Fussenegger, professor at the Department of Biosystems Science and Engineering at ETH Zurich.

They help to monitor health using biosensitive ink that changes color following the modifying composition of the body’s interstitial fluid.

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The researchers say that the biomedical tattoo could one day potentially be used to not only detect certain diseases and medical issues but could also be used to “noninvasively monitor response to treatment.” The researchers have developed a self-powering chip which sits under the surface of the skin. The chip contains a number of sensors which can monitor alcohol intake and blood levels in the host body, which could be useful in rehabilitation environments.

Earlier this month, engineers from the University of California San Diego revealed another skin-based research project which could impact our health. This time, by monitoring drug and alcohol intake.

Sources :
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Yes, mushrooms are good for you. But do they hold medicinal properties too?

Mushrooms have been used in Eastern medicine for centuries to treat everything from asthma to gout.

Now they’re being marketed in the West as functional or medicinal mushrooms that can prevent cancer or stimulate higher brain function, but there are relatively few trials in humans to back up these claims.

There are more than 2,000 species of edible mushrooms on the planet, but many of us probably only know a few kinds. Sauteing or grilling up white button mushrooms and portobellos may sound familiar to Americans, but in other parts of the world, particularly Asia, soups and stews might contain shiitake, maitake, oyster or lion’s mane.

To find a really good variety of mushrooms, I went to my local Mitsuwa, a Japanese market chain, located at a busy intersection on the west side of Los Angeles. It’s pretty drab outside, but when you walk in the doors, there’s lots of color and sound: Japanese snacks in bright packages, an aisle of nothing but singing rice cookers, and a rainbow array of mochi ice cream, the Japanese answer to an ice cream sandwich.

Vendors hawk steaming bowls of ramen and freshly fried tempura on one side of the building. And on the other side, there’s the produce aisle, which includes rows and rows of mushrooms.

Manager Yumi Kuwata buys the mushrooms here and says her top sellers include shimeji (beech mushrooms,) enoki (tiny white mushrooms with small caps) and shiitake, but she always has at least 10 varieties.

Kuwata says her customers buy mushrooms because they’re healthy and low in calories. “Japanese food [is] very healthy cuisine. So that’s what they are expecting,” she says.

But mushrooms offer a lot more than low calories.

Viki Sabaratnam, the scientist in charge of the mushroom research center at the University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, says mushrooms are particularly good for us because of what they do before humans harvest them: “Their basic function in the environment is recycling of large molecules, and in the process they produce these fruit bodies, we call them, and they accumulate some of these components.”

The components include dozens of nutrients like selenium, vitamin D, potassium and compounds known as beta glucans, which can help fight inflammation in the body. Chronic inflammation can contribute to many diseases of aging, such as cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and dementia. Think of mushrooms as the superheroes of the fungi kingdom.

In the lab, researchers have reported all kinds of promising mushroom benefits, from killing cancer in human cells to reducing insulin resistance in diabetic mice.

But research on actual humans hasn’t been as prolific.

There are a few outliers: Shiitake mushroom extracts seem to help prolong the lives of stomach cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, and in fact doctors in Japan now prescribe them for that purpose.

Also, maitake (hen-of-the-woods) and scaly wood mushroom extracts seem to strengthen the immune system of some breast cancer patients.

It’s hard to draw big conclusions about how these extracts would impact a broad range of people, though, because the studies have been small and targeted to specific populations.

Sabaratnam is studying how mushrooms might someday help fight off dementia, which affects around 50 million people today, with 10 million more added every year. She and her team reviewed studies of 20 different medicinal mushrooms thought to improve brain function and about 80 different metabolites isolated from those mushrooms that were tested in cells in the lab and in mice. They found that these metabolites improved recovery and function in damaged neural cells and had antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits.

“We have shown in lab experiments, yes, some of these properties are there,” But as she admits, “it’s quite a long way to go” to say how these mushroom extracts will work in actual humans.

But that hasn’t stopped the dietary supplement industry from jumping on reports of mushroom health benefits. There are teas, coffees and pills containing extracts of mushrooms that promise to reduce stress or jump start your brain.

Megan Ware is a dietitian in private practice in Orlando. She sees the potential health benefits of mushrooms, and even drinks mushroom coffee when she wants to feel extra alert. But she warns: “If you’re eating cheeseburgers and fries for lunch every day and you eat a couple mushrooms along with it, that doesn’t mean it’s going to lower your risk for heart disease or diabetes or any of those lifestyle conditions.”

Maybe one day, science will be able to prove that mushrooms can help prevent and treat disease. And if not, well, mushrooms are really delicious, so why not add a few new ones to your diet?

Here’s a list of a few tasty mushrooms that also show promising health benefits:

Mushrooms And Their Potential Medicinal Benefits

Most edible mushrooms contain high levels of nutrients and antioxidants, are high in fiber and low in cholesterol, and can help us lose weight if we swap them out for less healthy foods. But some appear to contain properties that could potentially benefit human medicine. Here’s some selected mushrooms and what we know about them so far.

Lentinula edodes (shiitake)

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Extracts of this widely consumed mushroom may help humans improve their immune system, prolong the lives of some cancer patients, and appear to kill certain viruses in the lab and improve gut microbes in mice.

Ganoderma lucidum (reishi)

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Extracts from this mushroom are credited with reducing obesity in mice by altering their gut bacteria.

Pleurotus ostreatus (oyster mushroom)

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In the lab, extracts of this mushroom appear to inhibit growth of breast and colon cancer cells.


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The Sjögren’s Syndrome Diet

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What is the Sjögren’s syndrome diet?

The Sjögren’s syndrome diet is a food-based approach to reducing inflammation and other symptoms of Sjögren’s syndrome. While not a cure for this autoimmune condition, modifying your diet can help to treat symptoms, provide a higher quality of life, and improve your overall health.

What is Sjögren’s syndrome?

Sjögren’s syndrome is an autoimmune disease most common in older women, though it can affect people of all ages. Autoimmune disorders cause your immune system to attack healthy parts of your body, mistaking them as threats.

The disease causes your immune system to attack glands that produce tears and saliva. This affects your body’s ability to produce moisture.

The most common symptoms from this disorder are dry mouth and dry eyes. However, you may also experience other symptoms including:

  • joint pain
  • swelling
  • dry skin
  • dry throat
  • dry nasal passages
  • vaginal dryness
  • difficulty swallowing

Sjögren’s syndrome is often linked to other autoimmune disorders, such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.

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Sjögren’s Syndrome & Diet

Similar to many recommended diets, the Sjögren’s syndrome diet focuses on well-balanced meals rich with vegetables, lean proteins, and fruits. Other than increasing nutrients and healthy proteins in your diet, the Sjögren’s diet reduces or eliminates foods that can cause inflammation or trigger allergic reactions.

Ginger root with green leaves, watercolor illustration with clipping pathCombined with a prescribed treatment plan, a moderated diet can help to prevent or reduce dryness and inflammation from Sjögren’s syndrome.

Foods to avoid

Pursuing the Sjögren’s diet or a similar anti-inflammatory diet means eliminating common trigger foods and allergens.

Some foods to avoid include:

  • red meat
  • processed foods
  • fried foods
  • dairy
  • sugars and sweets
  • alcohol
  • soda
  • gluten
  • refined grains
  • safflower, corn, and canola oils

Some foods affect people differently. Though these foods can trigger inflammation and worsen Sjögren’s syndrome symptoms, some can be eaten in moderation. This specifically applies to some dairy products, such as yogurt and cheese.

If your symptoms begin to worsen after eating specific foods, consider eliminating them from your diet. Also, discuss your symptoms with your doctor to ensure you receive the best treatment.

Foods to eat

Collage from different pictures of tasty food

Maintaining a diet rich in foods with anti-inflammatory effects can reduce dryness symptoms and provide relief from other associated conditions. Some foods high in anti-inflammatory benefits include:

  • leafy green vegetables
  • nuts
  • fruits
  • turmeric
  • ginger
  • garlic
  • fatty fish
  • olives and olive oil
  • avocado
  • whole grains


How you cook your foods can also affect dry mouth symptoms. Here are some additional tips to make your meals more enjoyable:

  • If you choose to make a sandwich, consider adding vegetables that are high in moisture, such as cucumbers.
  • Adding sauces to your meals can ease swallowing, but use creamy sauces in moderation to limit fat content.
  • Try soups and smoothies as alternatives to dry foods.
  • Drink with your meals to ease swallowing.
  • Soften your foods with broth.
  • Tender-cook your meats to prevent them from drying out.

Always consult your physician before beginning any treatment program. This general information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your healthcare professional. Consult with your healthcare professional to design an appropriate treatment plan.

Plasma Med Research is currently enrolling people that are diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome. If you, or someone you know may be intrested in participating in one of our many studies, please reach out to us at www.plasmamedpatients.com/contact or message us on Facebook.

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Article Source: Healthline

Crohn’s Research: Recent Recaps, What’s Going on Behind the Scenes

babesa_research_donate_plasma_medical_lyme_tickborne_babesia clinical studiesAlthough there is an abundance of researchers working on developing effective treatments for Crohn’s, it can be hard to keep up on all the different things that are currently being done. In attempt to make research more transparent for all, here’s a few recaps on what researchers are finding– right now.

Artificial sweetener could intensify symptoms in those with Crohn’s disease

The new findings, recently published in Inflammatory Bowel Diseases, revealed increases in the numbers of Proteobacteria, a large phylum [group] of microbes, in the intestines of mice drinking water supplemented with Splenda. Half of the mice studied, belonging to a genetic line that suffers a form of Crohn’s disease were more affected than the remaining half of mice, which belong to a healthy mouse line. Splenda produced intestinal overgrowth of E. coli (a member of the Proteobacteria group) and increased bacterial penetration into the gut wall, but only in Crohn’s disease-like mice.

The researchers also found that Splenda ingestion results in increased myeloperoxidase activity in the intestines of mice with the bowel disease, but not in the healthy mice. Myeloperoxidase is an enzyme in leukocytes (white blood cells) that is effective in killing various microorganisms. The inference is that the increased presence of E. coli intensified the myeloperoxidase activity in the bowel as the body sought to fight off the invader. The findings suggest that consumption of Splenda may increase myeloperoxidase production only in individuals with a pro-inflammatory predisposition, such as Crohn’s disease or other forms of inflammatory bowel disease patients. As part of this process, inflammation and its attendant consequences could exacerbate the symptoms of Crohn’s disease.

“Our findings suggest that patients with Crohn’s disease should think carefully about consuming Splenda or similar products containing sucralose and maltodextrin,” said the study’s lead author, Alex Rodriguez-Palacios, DVM, MSc, DVSc, PhD, assistant professor of medicine at Case Western Reserve School of Medicine. “Several studies have examined the ingredients found in this widely available product, separately. Here, we used Splenda as a means to test the combined effect of the commercial ingredients and used one of the best animal models of ileal Crohn’s disease.” This study demonstrates that the sweetener induces changes in gut bacteria and gut wall immune cell reactivity, which could result in inflammation or disease flare ups in susceptible people. On the other hand, the study suggests that individuals free of intestinal diseases may not need to be overly concerned.”

Find out more, here: Source

Engineering the gut microbiome with ‘good’ bacteria may help treat Crohn’s disease


Penn Medicine researchers have singled out a bacterial enzyme behind an imbalance in the gut microbiome linked to Crohn’s disease. The new study, published online this week in Science Translational Medicine, suggests that wiping out a significant portion of the bacteria in the gut microbiome, and then re-introducing a certain type of “good” bacteria that lacks this enzyme, known as urease, may be an effective approach to better treat these diseases.

“Because it’s a single enzyme that is involved in this process, it might be a targetable solution,” said the study’s senior author, Gary D. Wu, MD, associate chief for research in the division of Gastroenterology at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. “The idea would be that we could ‘engineer’ the composition of the microbiota in some way that lacks this particular one.”

An imbalance in the gut microbiome — more “bad” bacteria than “good” — is known as dysbiosis, which is caused by environmental stressors, such as intestinal inflammation, antibiotics, or diet. Gut dysbiosis is believed to fuel Crohn’s disease and other diseases, but the mechanisms behind that relationship is not fully understood by researchers looking to strike a healthier, bacterial balance for patients. Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that affects nearly one million children and adults in the United States.

In a series of human and mouse studies, the researchers discovered that a type of “bad” bacteria known as Proteobacteria feeding on urea, a waste product that can end up back in the colon, played an important role in the development of dysbiosis.

The “bad” bacteria, which harbor the urease enzyme, convert urea into ammonia (nitrogen metabolism), which is then reabsorbed by bacteria to make amino acids that are associated with dysbiosis in Crohn’s disease. “Good” bacteria may not respond in a similar manner, and thus may serve as a potential therapeutic approach to engineer the microbiome into a healthier state and treat disease.

“The study is important is because it shows that the movement of nitrogen into bacteria is an important process in the development of dysbiosis,” Wu said. “It also proves using a single enzyme can reconfigure the entire composition of the gut microbiota.”

Using this approach, in the current study, researchers showed that inoculating pre-treated mice with a single bacterial species, Escherichia coli, altered the gut microbiome in a significant way, depending on the presence of urease. Mice injected with urease-negative E. coli did not lead to dysbiosis, while mice with urease-positive E. coli did. The urease-positive E. coli also exacerbated colitis in the mice.

The research was conducted by Wu and colleagues from Penn Medicine and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), under the PennCHOP Microbiome Program with funding from the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation.

Similar to mice, treating five human subjects with the same two antibiotics and PEG also successfully reduced bacterial load in their intestinal tract by 100,000-fold, suggesting that it might be possible to engineer the composition of the gut microbiota in patients with inflammatory bowel disease.

Find out more, here: Source

Dysfunctional gene may be culprit in some Crohn’s disease cases


Sundrud’s laboratory, from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), is working to understand the characteristics and functions of TH17 cells, a subset of immune cells that circulate throughout the body. These cells protect many types of tissues from infection, but they can also promote chronic inflammatory conditions like Crohn’s disease, which specifically targets the intestinal tract.

Knowing TH17 cells need to function in a variety of tissue environments throughout the body, Sundrud’s team wondered if and how these cells might use different tools to behave normally in one environment — or tissue — than they’d use in another. Perhaps activating one gene could be useful in the lungs, while activating another would be useful in the gut, the same way you might bring a bathing suit on a trip to Florida and a jacket if you’re headed to Canada.

This study built on previous research from the Sundrud lab, which showed that when TH17 cells entered the intestine in human tissue samples, they increased the expression of a gene called MDR1.

But MDR1 is only known to transport chemotherapeutic drugs out of tumor cells, so why would it be expressed in immune cells in the gut?

The new study suggests that MDR1 is responsible for protecting TH17 cells in the gut from bile acids — detergent-like molecules produced by the liver that break down fats. Normally, the liver secretes bile acids after we eat to aid digestion. As food moves through the digestive tract, these acids are reabsorbed when they reach the ileum — the final portion of the small intestine — and the site of ileal Crohn’s disease, the most common form of Crohn’s.

“T cells only see high levels of bile acids in the ileum. They know this, and they adapt once they get there,” says Sundrud.

This discovery led the researchers to identify a mechanism where ileal Crohn’s disease appears to be induced by bile acids when T cell adaptation does not occur the way it should. The team used a genetically modified mouse model to observe the expression and function of MDR1 in mice. They found that the gene’s expression increased when the cells entered the ileum. But, in mice where the gene couldn’t be activated in the gut, TH17 cells that were exposed to bile acids suffered severe oxidative stress. This stress caused the TH17 cells to become overactive, leading to Crohn’s disease-like intestinal inflammation in mice.

Using bile acid sequestrants, an FDA-approved class of drugs used in transplant patients that absorb bile acids like a sponge, scientists were able to restore normal T cell function in the ileum and attenuate Crohn’s disease in mice.

To establish the relevance of their findings, the team tested blood samples from healthy humans, as well as those with a variety of inflammatory bowel diseases, including Crohn’s. They found a subset of patients with Crohn’s disease had severely impaired MDR1 expression.

Not only does this suggest that the cause of Crohn’s disease in these patients may be oxidative stress due to dysfunctional MDR1, but that for the subset of patients with this dysfunction, bile acid sequestrants may be an effective treatment. Together with his collaborators, Sundrud hopes to fund a clinical study to test exactly that.

Find out more, here: Source

Blood Test for Colitis Screening Using Infrared Technology Could Reduce Dependence on Colonoscopy, Study Finds


A fast, simple blood test for ulcerative colitis using infrared spectroscopy could provide a cheaper, less invasive alternative for screening compared to colonoscopy, which is now the predominant test, according to a study between the Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Institute for Biomedical Sciences at Georgia State University.

The researchers used Attenuated Total Reflectance Fourier Transform Infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy to examine the blood serum of mice with colitis and found nine absorption peaks that could be used to indicate the presence of the disease in the blood sample.

The findings, recently published in the Journal of Biophotonics, suggest a new testing procedure that could be developed to help doctors more easily screen patients for ulcerative colitis.

More than 1.6 million people in the United States suffer from inflammatory bowel disease, which includes ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. Ulcerative colitis causes inflammation and ulcers in the lining of the large intestine. Adults 50 and older are expected to get a colonoscopy, a test that allows a doctor to look at the inner lining of the large intestine (rectum and colon), every five years or more frequently if abnormalities are found. The test can help find ulcers, colon polyps, tumors and other areas of inflammation or bleeding.

However, many people don’t like getting colonoscopies because the procedure is uncomfortable and requires them to fast an entire day and clean out their colon by drinking a liquid solution. Colonoscopies can also be costly because they require sedation and several medical personnel and have risks of complications. There remains a great need for simpler and cost-effective techniques to diagnose inflammatory bowel disease, according to Dr. A. G. Unil Perera, Regents’ Professor of Physics, and Dr. Didier Merlin, professor in the Institute for Biomedical Sciences.

“Colonoscopy is used as a screening technique, so even if you don’t know if a person has colitis or not, that’s currently the only way to clearly check and say they do,” Perera said. “We are not talking about replacing colonoscopy. We have shown that a minimally invasive blood test can tell if a patient has an indication of colitis. Then, doctors can perform a colonoscopy to see how far the disease has spread and whether there are signs of cancer.”

This blood test using infrared spectroscopy is much quicker, less invasive and much less expensive compared to colonoscopy. There are no risks, except a simple finger prick to get a blood sample, Perera said.

In this study, the researchers used two groups of mice with different types of colitis, chronic and acute. The mice with chronic colitis, the interleukin 10 (IL 10) mice, had a gene modification that allowed them to develop colitis. The mice with acute colitis, the Dextran Sodium Sulphate (DSS) mice, were administered DSS in their drinking water for seven days, and they developed colitis over time. The control group in the study was mice before they were fed DSS.

Find out more, here: Source


Plasma Med Research is recruiting potential donors diagnosed with Crohn’s, Lupus, MS, and many more indications. For more information on how to become a donor and help research, please visit http://www.plasmamedresearch.com.

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Thank you, and we look forward to working with you.


12 Healthy Diet Tips for Hepatitis C and Liver Disease

Dealing with liver disease or any chronic illness can be challenging enough and can bring an out of control feeling. Your diet is something you can control. It gives you a sense of being behind the wheel with your health.

The old adage ‘you are what you eat’ is true.  What we eat affects our entire body, especially our liver.  The liver is the powerhouse of the body.  It is the second largest organ and helps with many vital functions.  When our liver is unhealthy, it affects our entire body, even your immune system, which helps you fight disease.

Think of your liver in terms of a highly efficient engine and filter.  What you eat, drink and expose to your body is chemically broken down by your liver and affects your immune system and many other functions of your body.


It’s important to eat and drink the right fuel in order to operate effectively. With having Hep C, I learned 12 healthy diet tips for Hepatitis C or any liver disease that help the liver do its jobs and help repair some liver damage.

The American Liver Foundation states that eating an unhealthy diet can even lead to liver disease.  For example, a person who eats a lot of fatty foods is at higher risk of being overweight and having (NAFLD) non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.

An unhealthy diet and exposure to dangerous chemicals can do damage to your liver and cause it not to function properly.  Like ‘sludge’ in your gas tank an unhealthy diet can slow down or worse, lead to compromised liver function.

When I was first diagnosed with Hep C over twenty years ago, along with seeing my liver specialist, I saw a registered dietitian for nutritional counseling.  I wanted to know from having Hepatitis C what kind of diet was best.

12 Healthy Diet Tips for Hepatitis C and any liver disease is:

  1.  Eating foods from all food groups in healthy portions such as whole grains, lean proteins, low fat dairy, fruits, vegetables and healthy fats.
  2. Eating foods with high fiber such as fresh fruits, vegetables, lentils, beans and whole grains are liver healthy foods.  Fiber it up, it’s nature’s broom to help eliminate toxins from the body.
  3.  Eat a well balanced diet, but eat lean proteins from poultry, fish, and plant based proteins.
  4. Limit red meat due to this is harder and takes longer for your system to break it down, plus it can contribute to bloating.
  5. Avoid uncooked shellfish such as oysters and clams or other uncooked meats.
  6. Limit foods and drinks that are high in sugar and salt.
  7. Limit eating high fatty foods.
  8. Limit eating fried or processed foods.
  9. Stay within a healthy weight range because the liver can function better than if we’re over or under weight.
  10. Eating smaller meals throughout the day is also better than large meals.  Your liver has to work harder to break down high fat and larger meals.  This will also help stabilize blood sugar, cravings, and the bloated, sleepy feeling that can come from eating larger meals.
  11. It is best to limit foods that have a lot of sugar and high sodium (salt). High sodium foods and eating too much protein will make you retain fluid and can lead to excess toxins in your blood stream.   Be careful not to limit your protein too much because it can result in a lack of certain amino acids that is essential for your body to function properly.
  12. Drink plenty of pure water, filtered if possible.  Drink at least 64 ounces a day.  Avoid Alcohol.  Alcohol is like throwing gas on a fire with liver disease and increases damage.


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Always consult your physician before beginning any treatment program. This general information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your healthcare professional. Consult with your healthcare professional to design an appropriate treatment plan.

Article Source:  https://www.lifebeyondhepatitisc.com/2015/06/ten-healthy-diet-tips-hepatitis-c-liver-disease-2/